Bianchi powers to victory in the Desafio das Estrelas 14 January, 2013 Top three in the Desafio das Estrelas karting race: winner Jules Bianchi (middle), second place Felipe Nasr (left) and third place Lucas Di Grassi (right) Jules Bianchi has won the ‘Desafio das Estrelas’ – the international karting event organised by Felipe Massa, featuring a host of top drivers, obviously including Felipe himself and, making his debut at the event, Fernando Alonso. At the Beta Carrero World kart track, the Force India reserve driver won the first race and was fourth in the second, amassing 40 points, five more than the runner-up, Brazil’s Felipe Nasr and ten more than another Brazilian, Lucas Di Grassi who was third. “I am very happy with this victory,” said Bianchi. “I had already won last year, but that time there was a slight mistake with the weight of the kart, but this time everything went well. It’s nice to race against some of the best drivers and in front of such a big and enthusiastic crowd. I want to the thank the Massa family for everything and I hope I can come back next year to take part again.” Jules’s name can be added to a top class roll of honour, featuring such names as Felipe Massa, Rubens Barrichello and Michael Schumacher. The two Scuderia Ferrari drivers were out of luck on their first competitive driving event for 2013. Felipe finished eighth overall on 14 points, after finishing tenth and eighth in the two rounds. “This was probably the hardest Desafio ever for me,” said the Ferrari man. “If everything is not perfect, then even a tenth can make a big difference. My engine was not at its best yesterday and I paid for that today. The most important thing is that the event is getting bigger year after year. I was very pleased that Fernando was here with us and I’m sure he had fun!” The Brazilian was absolutely right about his team-mate having fun, as Fernando himself confirmed, even though he failed to score points, with a twenty first and an eighteenth place to his name, because of accelerator problems which saw him retire from race 1. “It was a very enjoyable weekend and I hope the spectators had has much fun as I did. Will I be back next year? If Felipe asks me, definitely!” The two Ferrari men are on a busy schedule and, as soon as the karting challenge was over, they boarded a plane for Italy where, as from Monday, they tackle their first official Ferrari F1 engagement of the 2013 season. The 22nd edition of “Wrooom” gets underway at Madonna di Campiglio, where Scuderia Ferrari meets up with media from all over the world against the amazing backdrop of the Dolomite mountains. Among other events, Felipe and Fernando will once again find themselves at the wheel of karts: “Wrooom” ends with a challenge between the Ferrari drivers and Ducati riders, featuring a few guest stars on the ice lake in the Trentino ski resort. (Ferrari) Subbed by AJN. Tweet fools Amazing to see new winners on podium that had no FIA participation nor Bernie Max Smoot Can Bianchi make this victory work to secure the Force India seat the way that Grosjean closed on his seat after the Race of Champions? Butterfly @Max Smoot: I think he’ll get the FI seat regardless. Ferrari are probably going to offer FI a sweet engine deal for 2014. Besides, the kid is fast. It’s a done deal, IMO. Just the paperwork to be sorted out.